UK's May cracks joke about election disaster

UK's May cracks joke about election disaster

Mrs May's authority has been severely diminished after a disastrous general election which saw her lose her Commons majority and a deal with the DUP looks vital for the continuation of Tory rule.

Mrs May called the election in April because she believed she would easily defeat Labour, with polls showing the Tories 24 points ahead.

But within the Conservative Party, the election recriminations are continuing.

Sir Lynton has managed successful campaigns for Australian Prime Ministers John Howard, former London Mayor Boris Johnson and May's predecessor David Cameron.

DUP leader Arlene Foster is due to see May on Tuesday for crunch talks, which could force the delay of the government's presentation of its legislative programme to parliament by Queen Elizabeth II, due on June 19.

May's two top controversial policy aides Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill quit their positions on the weekend as Tory MPs demanded either the scalps of the joint chiefs of staff or the prime minister's own.

In a post for Conservative Home, Timothy said the reason for the hung parliament result was not an "absence of support " for Theresa May and the Conservatives "but an unexpected surge in support for Labour".

"We have failed to get our message about being the party of the ladder of opportunity across and we failed to get a message that we are also the party for the poor".

In a surprise move, Michael Gove was appointed environment and agriculture minister less than a year after the prime minister sacked him as justice minister.

Scottish Conservatives sharply increased their representation in the Westminster parliament last week, in contrast to the party's losses in England, strengthening the influence of their leader Ruth Davidson within the party. Many in the party were furious at the pair for shutting them out of decision-making during the election campaign. Meanwhile Denmark's finance minister said he hoped the outcome of the British election would lead to a pause to rethink the direction in which the Brexit negotiations were heading."After the general election it is very unclear to know exactly what the United Kingdom approach to Brexit now will be", Kristian Jensen said.German Foreign Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, speaking at a financial conference in Berlin, said his government was aiming for a Brexit deal that would limit negative consequences for the bloc but nor did it want to weaken Britain.

And a Downing Street source said the talks had been "constructive" so far.

Talks between Theresa May and the DUP over a deal that would prop up the Conservative government have been "constructive" and are "going well", according to Arlene Foster.

"We haven't negotiated, we haven't progressed".

"Our role as guarantors, here in Dublin and London, is to act as co-guarantors and not to be close to any particular party in the north, whether it's nationalist and republican or unionist".

Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the SNP pounced on the delay as a sign May's promise that she could form a minority government was in chaos, as the prime minister chaired her first meeting of her reshuffled Cabinet at 10 Downing and met to placate a group of right-wing MPs known as the 1922 committee who are livid with her performance.

The chaos has also weighed on the pound, which has plunged nearly two percent since Thursday, and the government may have to delay the announcement of its policy plans to parliament. Buckingham Palace declined to comment on the Queen's schedule.

Green cited the ongoing negotiations with the DUP when he was asked if next Monday's speech had been delayed.

One of the reasons for the delay is also believed to be because the speech has to be written on goat's skin parchment, which takes a few days to dry - and the Tory negotiations with the DUP mean it can not be ready in time.

Earlier in the day Britain's secretary of state for exiting the EU (Brexit), David Davis, had threatened to walk away from the Brexit negotiations with no deal.

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